My current players are approaching the conclusion of Rivers Run Red. After they're done clearing Hargulka's Stronghold, I expect they'll return to their capital (they're 14 months into kingdom building) and find the destruction caused by the owlbear, then track it back to its lair for the big finale.
Problem is, their capital was built around Oleg's Trading Post, the owlbear lair as written is ~90 miles away, and they've dutifully explored almost the entire map except the bottom two rows. I'm struggling with how to explain how a Huge enraged monster traveled 90 miles (some of which is through developed/settled kingdom territory) to trash the capital and then traveled 90 miles back to its lair - but the kingdom leaders somehow managed to travel all the way back up to the capital (probably through some of the same hexes as the owlbear, given where they're built roads) and only discover or hear about it when they get back tot he capital.
I could move the owlbear lair closer to the capital, but it will beg the question of why they didn't find it during their previous exploration. I could have the owlbear attack a different town, but the only other settlement they currently have in their kingdom is around the Sootscale caverns/silver mine and it's only a few months old, e.g., not very big.
Thoughts/suggestions? Maybe I could I move it off the map to the east - outside the scope of their charter, but I'm sure that wouldn't stop them.
Hehe. Everyone asks this one. No. “Cannot share a hex” improvements are only prevented from sharing a hex with other “cannot share a hex” improvements, and can freely share hexes with other improvements (basically, only one “cannot share a hex” improvement per hex). Each improvement may only be applied to a given hex once.
Effect is per hex.
Thanks! That will make my players happy - and hopefully they won't think to just wind an aqueduct through the entirety of the plains just for the cheap bonus. ;)
One more question that's been bugging me: do the "cannot share a hex" terrain improvements also preclude the "can share a hex" improvements? In other words, I know you can't have a Mine and a Quarry in the same hex, but can you build a Road in the same hex as a Sawmill or a Watchtower in the same hex as a Mine? This is my second time DMing Kingmaker and the first time I said no sharing at all (that's how I read it), but my current players are pushing back more (go figure: they're 13- and 11-year old boys).
Quick question about aqueducts (using Ultimate Campaign rules): once the aqueduct is connected between a hex with a settlement and a hills/mountain hex (with river/lake), does the kingdom get the +1 Loyalty/Stability bonus for each hex the aqueduct passes through, or just once for the whole aqueduct?
Thanks, JohnB. That's perfect: if it's dangerous to speak her real name, that explains why they (even those allied with her) use the other nicknames for her. Make her She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
In our campaign, it will be more like 6 years real time between Books 1 and 6 (we only play once or twice a year over a long weekend) so I'll be *very* surprised if they remember!
After completing Book Two, my PCs are now following up on some of the clues that will eventually point to Nyrissa (e.g., the dead unicorn, the ring of bestial friendship, Hargulka referencing "the Green Queen," the Dancing Lady referencing "the Queen of Forgotten Time"). This includes talking to some of the other fey they've befriended in the Stolen Lands: the pranksters, Melianse, Tiressia.
What might those fey know of Nyrissa and what she's been up to?
I recently ran the Grigori encounter for my group and patterned him on Trump, including modifying actual Trump quotes to fit the setting ("Make [Kingdom] Great Again!"). It made it very easy to improvise his responses to the PCs, got a very strong reaction from the group, and was much fun. They successfully drove him out of town, though the ruler Eshah (a temperamental half-orc fire sorceress) nearly blasted him after he said "If I were running [Kingdom], I'd fire Eshah. I mean, I'd look at her right in that fat, ugly face of hers, I'd say 'Eshah, you're fired.'"
I know a spontaneous spellcaster can always use "spells per day" slots to cast lower level spells (e.g., using a 3rd-level slot to cast a 2nd-level spell), but can a spontaneous caster choose to fill a higher level "spells known" slot with a lower level spell? (e.g., using a 3rd-level "spells known" slot to learn a 2nd-level spell)?
If you go human and use the favored class bonus for extra spells known, you can pick up the restore/remove spells you might need in combat (fear/poison/paralysis), then scroll the rest.
My life oracle looooves spiritual weapon/ally: after casting one or more of those, she can continue to contribute to combat even while healing the front-liners. Quick Channel is also handy for that, or for piling on when big healing numbers are needed.
I'm definitely skipping XP and just leveling them up when it makes sense. I usually do it mid-session - after the year break, it takes some time for the players to get back into their characters, so I don't like piling on a level-up at the same time.
It's also likely that there will be some smaller sessions sprinkled through the year with only a few of the players (a few of us live in the same area), plus I fully expect that some of them will really enjoy the downtime "kingdom building by email" elements while others won't participate at all. That all said, I'll still keep everyone at the same level for the big sessions, so tracking XP doesn't work.
BornofHate, I really like the idea of incorporating more half-orcs. Maybe full orc tribes, too - especially if only a half-orc party could negotiate any kind of peaceful co-existence.
BornofHate, that's one of the reasons we wanted to do Kingmaker: the time between annual sessions can be used for kingdom-building and, assuming I can manage to not end the long weekend mid-adventure, the characters will have a long break just as the players did.
Party detail as we know it so far:
Another random thing: since we only play once a year, we don't want player death to take someone out of the action for very long. None of the players like having backup characters who suddenly show up, and in Red Hand of Doom things occasionally got a little silly ("you happen to find two more raise dead scrolls in that monster's trove - exactly as many as you need!"), so we're thinking of implementing a "wounds & scars" mechanic similar to the one in the Skulls & Shackles Players Guide. I fully expect the party to be filled with eye patches, axe-hands, and peg legs within a couple of levels.
A bunch of old college buddies and I get together once a year for a long weekend of rolling dice. Last year, we finished a 5-year run through D&D 3.5 Red Hand of Doom, so this year we're switching to Pathfinder and starting a new campaign we're calling "Kingmaker: Half-Orcs Rule!" Only 5 of us have played Pathfinder with any regularity, so it's definitely not a group of optimizers.
I'm the DM and there are 8 either guys, though it's rare that all 8 can make it - so I'll likely have 6-8 players in any given year. I'll be leveraging the 6-player conversion (which is AWESOME) put together by the community here (which is ALSO awesome). If any folks out there have experience running or playing in a party that big, I'm thankful for any extra input on how to help it run smoothly and fun.
The other complication is that we collectively decided to make it an all half-orc party. Again, any experienced feedback on how to make that work would be great.
And, of course, there's the overarching question: is this a fun idea or a disaster waiting to happen - or both?
My life oracle (now 8th level) has gotten a ton of use out of spiritual weapon. She casts it in the first round of combat and then can still contribute to damage even when she's buffing and/or healing in later rounds - or she can spam it against opponents the rest of the party is having trouble with, eg, flying or incorporeal.
The question came up when I wanted my oracle to activate the ability on a comrade who was in combat nearby, but my oracle couldn't see the ally in the dark.
While I agree it should be consistent and it makes sense, the only rules I can find requiring line of sight/effect are under "Aiming a Spell" and supernatural abilities are described elsewhere.
My group uses them all the time, most often to make crucial saving throws. Just last session, my life oracle (who was out of spells) used one to add to the fighter's likely-failed Fort save against a poison that would've effectively taken her out of a nasty fight. DM even made it +4 instead of +2 since my oracle had Life Link up with the fighter.
That sounds great, though it's pulling teeth to keep a few of the players engaged over email during the year (focused on kids, jobs, etc.). Are the kingdom-building elements something that part of the group could drive, or does it really need buy-in from everybody?
My impression is also that Kingmaker would scale pretty well for a large group - true?
I haven't read Kingmaker, but my impression was that it's very sandbox-y and would require a pretty deep knowledge/investment to really appreciate the kingdom-building elements, which seems to be the unique element of that AP. Since some these guys only play once a year and don't think about it much otherwise, I thought that aspect of it would be a waste. Not the case?
(I posted this in "Advice" last week - hoping for more feedback in here!)
Once a year, 8 college buddies and I get together for a long weekend to roll dice. I DM this group, and after 4 years, we're finally finishing up Red Hand of Doom (3.5E) this year. Next year we're planning to switch to Pathfinder and play one of the adventure paths - but which one?
RotR is out because many of us are already playing it. Kingmaker would be a blast with this large of a group, but I don't think it works when we're playing so infrequently. I've read through most of Serpent's Skull, but I'm not very familiar with the remaining APs.
Looking for some collective experience and wisdom here - thanks!